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food network: gourmet next door promo

ok, so i just saw it for the first time.

yawn.

apparently no one told the marketing geniuses responsible for this tvfn gem that the purpose of a promo is to make people WANT to watch a show. based on that 15-second spot, all i can think is, who needs ambien or lunesta? just tune in when the show airs, and you should be sleeping like a baby in no time...

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  1. Just saw it- wow, I'm really excited...

    1. I saw the promo today as well, and I thought, "This sounds like every other FN cooking show." I don't know how much differentiation there will be between her show and others. (Excepting Good Eats, Iron Chef, et al.)

      1. I also noticed that her "prime debut" is at 1pm or something like that.

        2 Replies
        1. re: MMRuth

          <I also noticed that her "prime debut" is at 1pm or something like that.> Maybe that's prime time for the food network? The Hearty Boys' show was on at 9:30 Sunday mornings! (For those who don't remember, they were the winners of the first Food Network Star show)

          1. re: ChefJune

            funny, ChefJune!
            i saw the promo, and suspect that will be the extent of my exposure to her. just don't get it!

        2. I had the same reaction...bland show. But thought I was just being overly critical because I didn't care for her on TNFNS. Did think it was funny that she was given the highly sought after 1pm Sunday time slot.

          http://meandmyfork.blogspot.com

          1. The first full show is already up and playing on On Demand (for those who have it). It's not great but surprisingly it's not god-awful. AF makes a couple of things that would be far too challenging for the Frankenmoms... and then a couple of things that are maybe a little too pedestrian. Theme is French Bistro; menu is cheese puffs, stovetop potatoes, flank steak in a (kind of) red wine sauce, and profiteroles. Upside: pate choux is usually a little ambitious for TV chefs, and splitting a batch to make both app and dessert for the same meal was a nice idea. Downsides mostly concerned the concept, issues that were prominently raised in TNFNS, to wit:
            The very first words she utters on-air (kid you not) are "When I lived in France...." Ugh. The "bistro-this, bistro-that" only compounds the pretense.
            Okay to mention cooking for hubby, but doing it three times in the same segment sounds like... I don't know. Pandering, gloating, time-wasting, whatever.
            The very last words she utters are (this is almost verbatim), "The next time you need some inspiration, pay a visit to the gourmet next store." Labelling oneself a "gourmet" is bad enough, but making these your last words sounds like you're insisting-- when, in truth, half the stuff she made (potatoes, flank steak) was idiot-simple. Without going into technique issues, the "gourmet" thing really sticks in my craw because it assumes she's more skillful and knowledgeable than all her watchers, which is pretty clearly not the case. Producers should take care not to insist too much. Have to say, however, that AF does seem far more comfortable on-camera than she did on TNFNS. And-- big plus-- she only uses two pre-made ingredients, the ice cream and chocolate sauce for the profiteroles. Which I guess is better than most of the current TFN pseudo-cooks.

            13 Replies
            1. re: alias wade

              i also wouldn't presume that most people who watch are chowhounds. truly. some of the LEAST chowhoundy people i know (i've seen what they eat and cook and where they like to go) never cease to amaze me by telling me how much they love Food Network and then they tell me which shows they like and it's usually ones I don't. Actually I like very few of the shows but I do like Ina Garten's recipes. Some are really simple but they taste good.
              So she may be gourmet - and so may be that meal - to many of the viewers. Not that your comments don't sound like they're playing up the things I found annoying about her. But in the few episodes I watched I still think she was the best contestant.

              1. re: AMFM

                What's your definition of gourmet? Why doesn't she qualify? I haven't seen the show yet but just wondering.

                1. re: southernitalian

                  i could be wrong, but i'm guessing AF herself chose that particular title/moniker because she believes her target audience probably equates "french" with "gourmet."

                  btw, does anyone else think it's strange that the show is already available "on demand" before it even officially airs on network tv? sort of the equivalent of releasing a film on DVD before it opens in theaters. odd.

                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                    Not really, more and more networks are doing this with new shows to try and grow their audiences and create a buzz.

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        Yea it's the same reason they put them up on their websites for free download before they premiere too.

                        1. re: krez

                          it just strikes me as rather counterproductive if they're concerned about traditional "ratings" [i.e. nielsen]. i don't believe they can necessarily track the on-demand viewings from the various cable providers across the nation, or the free downloads/views on the web. so it would seem to me that their data might be skewed.

                          it doesn't matter...to be perfectly honest i just don't care about this show. i won't be watching it on demand, on the web OR on tvfn.

                          to each his own.

                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                            Actually, it's probably easier to track downloads and on demand than going through Nielsen. You know exactly how many people have expressed interest, as opposed to following trends of a select few viewers with a Nielsen box.

              2. re: alias wade

                I saw the promo the other day, ditto on the yawn.

                Thanks for letting us know about the preview on on demand, AW- i hated her when I would watch TNFNS because of her pretenscious attitude- 'When I was in France', 'gourmet-this', 'gourmet-that', etc. I liked reading your review. If i am home on sunday around that time, maybe I will tune in.

                1. re: teamuse

                  Meh. Ina Garten did a whole show about being in France. Rachael Ray is always talking about traveling to Italy. FN hosts have different experiences than some people. Hypothetically that should make them more interesting. I am tired of this idea that FN executives have the "real" people are threatened or hold in contempt anyone with professional expertise or any sort of travel or other luxury experience.

                  1. re: Avalondaughter

                    Right. It's one thing if your real next-door neighbor is always talking about their travels when you've never been anywhere. But a TV show has the potential to open up your world and help you find something new. And how to get a little taste of Paris here in my suburban home is a little more practical than how to get by in Paris on $40/day -- if/when I get back to Paris, I'm not going to be worrying about my food budget ;-) I already exchange recipes with my local buddies -- but it was very cool when my friend who had actually traveled in Ethiopia took us to an Ethiopian restaurant. Teach me something I don't already know!

                2. re: alias wade

                  The phrase "Gourmet Next Door" makes me think of the person who brings any meat cooked in wine to the potluck or to the family who just had a baby, when everyone else is bringing mac and cheese, lasagna, canned-soup casseroles, or take-out chicken. She knows she's not gourmet in a Michelin-star sense, but the other neighborhood moms call her that 'cause she's actually a decent home cook. I think there's some potential there.

                  1. re: momjamin

                    The problem I always had with her "Gourmet Next Door" concept is: I don't care whether my neighbor is a gourmet or not. It's supposed to sound friendly and approachable, I guess, but it comes across kind of pretentious in a "know it all" sort of " way.

                3. http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontr...

                  Since Amy Finley is a local, the San Diego Union Tribune ran a feature in today's Food section about the TV show

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: DiningDiva

                    First Brian Malarkey now Amy Finley, you guys must be very proud ; )

                    1. re: KTinNYC

                      Actually, Gavin Kaysen who is currently competing in FTV's Next Iron Chef, is the best of the lot. He represented the U.S. in this years' Bocuse d'Or competition in France.

                  2. If I really need to get my fill on French or French inspired food with American sensibilities thrown in, I'd rather watch Jacques Pepin.

                    If I really need to get French cuisine or technique "demystified" for me, I'd rather watch Julia Child.

                    I can't possibly see what "void" she is filling with her approach and format.... Julia and Jacques have covered this ground, and quite well I may add. She IS overtly Francofile it does come off the wrong way. She might have had something interesting if the show was called "An American in Paris"...whereby she is actually in France cooking for the everyday Frenchperson some US food... The French are just as curious about our cuisine as everybody else is...how about making some great USA vittle for those who think America is just about McD's and the like, and watching their reactions? Now THAT would have been interesing!

                    I wish her the best of luck, but I'm not interested in what she is going to cook or what she is going to say.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Cat Chow

                      You said that well, CC! and in that article, the San Diego picture used one of those pix that had her looking like Medusa! very bad hairdo.

                      1. re: ChefJune

                        Plus, the writer seemed to be very status conscious - either that, or wants to be a fashion or society writer. The "promotional" comments seemed to jump out at me with every paragraph.

                        "dressed in a gray T-shirt, Hudson jeans and olive Converse sneaks"
                        "oversized gunmetal hobo bag"
                        "Piling the groceries in the back of her black Mustang, Finley drove the mile or so to her client's restored Craftsman home in Mission Hills"

                      2. re: Cat Chow

                        TV shows these days aren't about filling voids - they are about copying what works. Plus on FN it's more about personality than anything. Most of the time I watch a FN show I'm not going to cook anything I see on it, I just enjoy watching it.

                        But in the end, she was the best of the lot and won a competition to get a new show - it's not like she shopped it around and they bought it.

                        1. re: krez

                          Agree, she probably was the best of the lot but the whole "I don't know if I can take this" melt down she had mid season, then the whole "you're eliminated" in the final 3 and then "uh...come back we didn't check JAG's background throughly enough" just deflated the souffle for me!

                          1. re: krez

                            Re Filling voids...the problem is FN abhors a void and just doesn't seem to put much thought into developing and sustaining quality shows, but hyperextending formula formats that end up annoyingly repetitive. For example, I'd like to see more Nigella Lawson who is basically at noon on Sundays (why not prime time) instead of 4+ doses of RR day. Why was Batali so drastically cut back? Why can't they seem to lure Jacques Pepin over from PBS. Why can't they have something like' America's Test Kitchen on FN? (I guess Good Eats attempts this, but I was thinking more like an acutal test kitchen where you can see them go at using several products/accessories of the same type) You guys get my drift. We don't need RR having yet another travel show, Paula having another show, yet another cake decorating challenge,etc. etc.

                            What about a show where people who like to cook can have an expert come in to their homes, assess their kitchens and cooking and give pointers/tips on how to better or leverage what they got more efficiently? Insurance clauses aside, has it even been thought of? Now that COULD be "becoming the gourmet next door"

                            1. re: Cat Chow

                              Well, it's all about eyeballs. They wouldnt keep duplicating these shows (I think) if they didn't get ratings. I doubt they are aimed at the super foodie chowhounders, etc. We can just wait until Saturday and PBS for the cooking shows that speak to us :)

                              1. re: Cat Chow

                                Good show ideas. I've always longed for a show with a sort of "culinary academy" theme, where the emphasis is instructional rather than just an array of similar recipes. I'd like to actually learn something, rather than watch someone bite into meatloaf and tell me how tasty it is!

                                1. re: Cat Chow

                                  I love ATK, but I think FN would shy away from anything that might disparage brand name food--imagine Chris Kimball taste testing barbeque sauce and making a face ans spitting out one of the samples. The makers of that brand would probably not be signing up to advertise on FN!

                                  On Food Network, everything is yum-o, and it's all about the money. At least PBS is allowed a little (sort of) free speech.

                                  But I agree with you, Cat Chow...more variety, more cooking, less personality by the numbers programming!

                            2. Faint praise, but AF was the best of that bunch. Jag or Rory probably would have fit into FN better though.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: Chimayo Joe

                                I totally agree. Those 2 were very loud and obnoxious and was hoping that they wouldn't win. Amy's not so bad; I saw her onDemand andshe isn't at all like any TNFNS winner. She's very quiet, no annoying little mannerisms, no cutsey phrases. She's refreshing in comparison to the FN's newest show: Simply Delicioso.

                                1. re: digkv

                                  Simply Delicioso is no good. Though I find it ironic that it started up shortly after Jag said Latin cooking/flair was something that was missing from the Food Network.

                              2. Yep, I saw that moving truck and thought "there goes the neighborhood"

                                1. Didn't say this in my earlier post, but what bugs me most about this show is the format. I mean, yet another demo show? On top of that, we have the problem of (excuse the phrase) having to use another Who-Dat? because s/he won a reality show whose You-Win-Your-Own-Show premise is probably misbegotten in the first place. Can't the development people at TFN come up with more novel show ideas, and more interesting (sorry, AF) people to host those shows? When you think about TGND from a development point of view, it just screams lazy execs. I guess a good counterargument would be that they're replicating a formula that "works," but truly I would question that, based on the continuing movement of such demo shows out of prime time. I would imagine that's also why we're getting stuff new stuff like "Two Dudes Catering," i.e., shows whose chief virtue seems to be that they're not demo shows. I guess really good ideas (IMHO: Good Eats, Ace of Cakes) are too few and far between....

                                  27 Replies
                                  1. re: alias wade

                                    IMHO the problem boils down to the same problem afflicting movie studios. Storytellers have been replaced by MBAs and marketing droids. ROI (Return on Investment) is the Gospel, and if one formula succeeded one time, then they'll keep churning out the same thing in hopes of repeating the success.

                                    Look at FN's "food geeking" shows. ("Geeking" in the circus sense, as freaks who would do anything.) First it was Anthony Bourdain, who, I admit, actually gave us story and heart in addition to bizarre foods. Then the short-lived Andrew Zimmern, whose paint didn't even get a chance to dry on his FN parking place before he was replaced by Zane Lamprey. I'm tired of "eating disgusting things" as a show theme.

                                    I miss the cooking show "Cooking with Master Chefs," (I may have the title wrong) which featured a sonorous, lovely-sounding husky voiced announcer you never saw, just heard her voice sparingly give explanation over video of the chef du jour creating his signature dish.

                                    One gripe about Ace of Cakes: No one ever talks about how the cakes *taste* and he never gives recipes for cake batter or frosting nor do they offer decorating technique advice.

                                    1. re: KenWritez

                                      One show that needs to die a quick and fiery death is Food Network Challenge. At the very least they need to drop it from the prime time schedule.

                                      1. re: Bunson

                                        amen to that.

                                        yeah, i'm sure tonight's episode was a real nail-biter.

                                        the national CHICKEN cook-off.

                                        seriously???

                                        who WATCHES these things?

                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                          <sheepishly raising hand>

                                          Well, I turned it on in anticipation of Next Iron Chef, and there was nothing else on, so I caught the end of the chicken cookoff. I always wonder in these big competitions how the FN cameras pick the people to focus on before they know who wins. It was a very amusing counterpart to, say, Top Chef or discussions on CH, seeing how the competitors adjusted to the constraints. "I didn't have all the time I needed for my biscuits, so I just cranked up the heat and hoped for the best." "These chicken breasts are HUGE, so I had to keep pounding them and it took up so much time" (and they still were undercooked.) (What, they didn't supply you with a knife?)

                                          1. re: momjamin

                                            Yeah, I saw Chicken Cook-Off too, In a weird way, those contests with home cooks are actually more fun than some of the FN "personalities." And a chicken cook-off or a barbecue thingy with home cooks is INFINITELY better than all endless competitions where engineers assemble cakes and/or decorate them....

                                      2. re: KenWritez

                                        Not to turn this into a nostalgia post, but wouldn't it be great if TFN jettisoned all its current programing for a week, and turned itself into, say, "Food Network-- Classic!"? Both execs and viewers might benefit from 150 hours of "Cooking with Master Chefs," or anything Julia Child, maybe a little Graham Kerr-- heck, maybe even the long lost "Floyd on France"! How's that for an idea? Brilliant! Now where's my seven-figure salary?!

                                        1. re: alias wade

                                          >> Now where's my seven-figure salary?! <<

                                          Same place as my winning lottery ticket! LOL....

                                          I wonder if it's time for someone to start up a "real" Food Network? IOTW, cooking shows for people who want to learn how to cook, where food and good cooking technique are more important than the host.

                                          (With apologies)
                                          "Oh give me a home, where the cooking shows roam,
                                          Where great food and cooking techniques hold sway;
                                          Where seldom is heard a Bam! or annoying Yum-O word,
                                          And the hosts are not babbling all day."

                                          1. re: KenWritez

                                            KenWritez: brilliant rendition, I must say.

                                            1. re: alkapal

                                              <bowing>

                                              Thenkyew, thenkyewsomuch!

                                        2. re: KenWritez

                                          Half the time the 'cakes' seem to be made of Styrofoam and wood.

                                          http://meandmyfork.blogspot.com

                                          1. re: Withnail42

                                            This is true. A lot of the fancier special occasion cakes seem to be less about making a cake and more "clay(fondant and modelling chocolate) model building". I'm hoping that along with the styrofoam and wood pieces they bring half or full sheets of edible cake to go along with it.

                                          2. re: KenWritez

                                            I don't think those cakes are for eating - they're more "showpieces" to show off the mastery of the baker, aren't they?

                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                              well, if it's not edible, then it doesn't showcase your "mastery" or artistry as a baker. you could just as easily be a carpenter or designer.

                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                Good point. Then I guess it showcases your mastery as a cake decorator.

                                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                  If they want to show non-edible skills they should take it to the art's and craft channel.

                                                  http://meandmyfork.blogspot.com

                                                2. re: LindaWhit

                                                  They're definitely showpieces, but how many of us can make cakes like these? No one I know can, and I certainly can't. I love seeing the artistry and craft these guys put into their cakes, but it gets old after a while. "Ho hum, another cake shaped like a stadium. Yawn."

                                                  1. re: KenWritez

                                                    No argument here, Ken. While I do enjoy seeing the cakes, they do get repetitious. So to mold an entire show around it seems repetitious. Oh wait - that's what FN excels at - repetition of the same stuff over and over again. My bad.

                                                    1. re: KenWritez

                                                      And the tension will they get it done in time? Will they get it there in one piece. Will it have a special meaning for that person with (insert illness or issue of your choosing here)?

                                                      1. re: Withnail42

                                                        Wow. Who knew that AOC could inspire such contempt? Only meant to suggest it was a "good" show (I think I said "good idea") in the sense that it wasn't stamped from the same old mouldy set of programming molds. Never a bad idea: cooking professionals with engaging personalities (esp. senses of humor about themselves, and a little humility) doing what they do every day (esp. when they happen to make somewhat unusual product). For all I know, the cake itself is terrible (though I doubt it). But really: are you actually missing that shot of someone taking an on-camera bite, making the oo-oo face, and saying, "That is sooo good!"? That element's absence may be the best thing about AOC! It might be the only FN show without it!

                                                        1. re: alias wade

                                                          The cake is so-so. Not terrible, but definitely not what I'd call delicious or even tasty.

                                                          1. re: alias wade

                                                            I don't hold the show in contempt, I'm just tired of the repetition. I think they can do much, much better but whatever reason the show stays in the "Gee whiz, aren't we clever?" mode. I would like to recipes! For me, "What" quickly bores me without "How" and "Why."

                                                            After the third or fourth exploding cake, MEGO.

                                                      2. re: LindaWhit

                                                        They have been reviewed on the Washington-Baltimore boards; general consensus seems to be that they're great for visual effect and hit-or-miss on edibility.

                                                        1. re: mordacity

                                                          I was watching it tonight and I could have sworn I saw the decorator touch her hair (push back with her hand) then go back to the cake. Did I see that correctly? Ugh. I can't help but wonder how something so manhandled might taste? And why don't we ever see them cut the cakes and eat them??

                                                          1. re: Goomba

                                                            Have you ever worked in a commercial kitchen? Much, *much* worse happens frequently.

                                                            1. re: KenWritez

                                                              Just think of Howie Kleinberg on Top Chef, sweating into the food constantly!

                                                          2. re: mordacity

                                                            Fondant = icky. The amount of fondant it takes to make one of those cakes = nasty.

                                                            1. re: mojoeater

                                                              The more I think about it, the more I wonder: do I like watching AOC because it's... not about food?

                                                    2. A more accurate title would be the "The Somewhat Skilled Home Cook (for Whom I Would Never Answer the Doorbell) Next Door." Her food seems passable, but her stilted manner is such an odd combination of awkwardness and pretension, it's more painful to watch than back to back episodes of TNFNS. Remember poor little Candice, the alleged model/cooking school student who struggled so during the first season of Top Chef? That microwave quiche creator is more qualified to host a cooking show than the majority of the contestants on this season's TNFNS. Where's adorable, big, gay Reggie from last season of TNFNS? He can't cook either, but at least he'd be fun at a party or on your TV.
                                                      Didn't Alton ask Tuschman and Fogelson if they could toss all of this season's contestants and try again next year? Nonsense! As long as there are potential FN hosts with a camcorder and access to a second-hand copy of Best Recipes from the Backs of Boxes, Bottles, Cans and Jars, who can talk REAL LOUD, YA'LL, there will always be a scintillating culinary competition on FN.

                                                      I would have loved to have witnessed the moment when Tuschman found out that everyone's favorite accronymed warhero/cooking juggernaut was a pathological liar. For the finale he's left with my friend Flicka and an uptight soccer mom with a facial tick so pronounced she is probably snorting her kid's Ritalin.

                                                      We'll know she's on her way out when they start promoting her new travel show extolling the virtues of airport Taco Bell's for $5.00 per day.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: pywacket

                                                        Wait, ANOTHER travel show with a FN host I don't want to watch...gag me with a spork!

                                                        There is some "travelling in Paris with kids" piece imbedded in her FN page. She didn't say anything useful, like:

                                                        1- Unique Paris to-do with kids: Visit the Bird Market on Sunday Mornings...next to Conciergerie. It's colorful, fun and the variety is outstanding!

                                                        2 - Stock up on snacks, drinks and quick vittles at Monoprix, the local supermarket, ESPECIALLY if you are renting a flat for a couple of weeks. Somehow she really misses telling parents what's really necessary....Instead she dedicates a WHOLE paragraph about "feeding your family" with croissants for breakfast...and the majority of said paragraph is about her trekking around Paris eating a regulation croissant and grabbing a coffee....

                                                        3 - Another fun to do with the kids, even if it is a bity touristy (but you ARE tourists, non?) The Bateux Mouches...seeing Paris from the vantage point of the Siene!

                                                        4 - Yes, the French don't put bottles of ketchup out on tables, but if you order SAUCE AMERICAIN it will be promptly brought out (well at least that's worked for me). However Amy wants to make sure that you know that it is vital to make Steak Tartare. Why didn't she mention that the traditional way is to have your Frites with Mayonnaise....try it, you'll like it!

                                                        4 - Definitely not "tradional" French but why not if you are over there with kids: EuroDisney (especially if you have dragged them to a couple of museums)

                                                        I disclose the above by saying that I've spent a total of 4 weeks in France, my French is passable but as a parent of k-level kids, these are the sort of things I would want to know. I'm defintely all for spending a summer in Paris once the kids are older!

                                                        1. re: Cat Chow

                                                          I had a look at her post in question. Reminds of Kathy-Lee Gifford in her hey day. When no matter what the subject was she would work her kids(son especialy) into it.

                                                          It reads like someone with a halfa**ed knowledge of the place. A tourist who spent a weeked. For someone who lived there (think she may have mentioned it once or twice) it's not very informative.

                                                      2. WILL they do something with the Medusa bob?
                                                        and pywacket (nice kitty!), i know what you mean about the facial tic. so offputting.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: alkapal

                                                          I think that she is kind of cute, for whatever that is worth...

                                                          But something weird that I noticed today- on the Bobby Flay "Throw down" show, they almost always tell the unsuspecting victims that they are to be the stars of a new food network show, and that is the reason for all the cameras around. It looks like they even film a segment or two of the show to give credibility to their claim. What finally occurred to me today was that these people almost always have a very good "presence" for television- much better than TNFNS people! Today it had some lady from San Antonio making "puffy" tacos- she might have been great on her own show! As would most of the others that they have had on thereā€¦

                                                          1. re: Clarkafella

                                                            I was thinking the exact same thing. The lady even made some comment about how someone tricked her into thinking she was getting her own show or special or something like that. I think she called it North of the Border?
                                                            BF seemed to know her well, and if she's got several restaurants, then she has the credibility for sure.

                                                            Bring it on!

                                                        2. I just hope that they have finally taught her to chew with her mouth closed.

                                                          1. I agree. I just don't understand some of these new shows. AF is an ok cook - I watched first show and wasn't impressed. She doesn't have skills or training. She is very much like many people at home - someone who likes to cook, and is a very good home cook. Not always the best for a TV show. I watch to learn more about cooking, not to criticize the host, although that is what I ended up doing while watching her show.

                                                            If there weren't any viable contestants, why didn't FN extend their search and start looking elsewhere for show hosts? Also, why don't they get some experienced people on their network. It seems to be too easy to fill in scheduling with reality shows and hosts with no experience.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: kprange

                                                              They don't fill their shows with experienced people because the unwashed masses are threatened by experienced people. People can't relate to chefs. Non-chefs are "real". How many times have you heard people praise SHE WHO MUST NOT BE NAMED (initials RR in case you didn't figure it out) for being a "real person" as if anyone who ever goes to culinary school or works in a restaurant is a robot?

                                                              Even if said educated and trained chef does a show on fairly basic food and gives clear instructions (like Sara Moulton or Tyler Florence), that's just too intimidating!! How dare someone actually tie back her hair and wear an apron on TV? That's so fake.

                                                              Don't forget that no matter how simple the recipe, if you can't promise to make it in 30 minutes, it takes too long and it will never fit into your busy lifestyle. Never mind that no one seems to be able to replicate those "real" recipes in 30 minutes. Other recipes take too long!

                                                              I think I'll go swallow some draino now.

                                                            2. The part that really irks me about her spot is her line: "You chose me."

                                                              NO I didn't!

                                                              2 Replies
                                                              1. re: Withnail42

                                                                Haven't seen the show yet, but I suspect her line could easily be: "You didn't choose Rory."

                                                                1. re: momjamin

                                                                  If gourmet next door stays on much longer I will certainly be surprised! She is a VERY sloppy cook and what she made looked terrible. She also needs to do something with her hair!
                                                                  I just don't think that she has a TV personality, she doesn't have what it takes in my opinion. I belong to quite a few recipe groups online and it seems everyone agrees her show is terrible.

                                                              2. I just saw this show yesterday for the first time and posted my initial reaction to this Digest topic: http://www.chow.com/grinder/3497

                                                                Yesterday's episode ironically named 'Gourmet Fiesta'
                                                                http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_...
                                                                is a total insult to both traditional Mexican cuisine and good American cooking influenced by it. This so called 'chef' must be angling for a job at the Taco Hell product development kitchens.

                                                                Chilly Killys, argghh! Someone should call MALDEF!
                                                                The crime? Contributing to the delinquency of impressionable 'Mericans.

                                                                21 Replies
                                                                1. re: DiveFan

                                                                  I agree - taped it and watched the last night - what a travesty!

                                                                  1. re: DiveFan

                                                                    I thought her whole thing was French. I believe she may have casually mentioned once that she lived there.

                                                                    I read that Grinder piece while I didn't see that episode. I'm glad I didn't. Sounded disgusting. Quite the gourmet.

                                                                    http://meandmyfork.blogspot.com

                                                                    1. re: Withnail42

                                                                      somebody please take away her spatula and hand her a hairbrush

                                                                      1. re: janebono

                                                                        LOL! Yes please do something with that hair! Shave it, brush it or cover it!

                                                                        Honestly, I have friends that can cook better than this woman who has a TV show and they not so messy while doing it. I know I sound harsh but her food just doesn't appeal to me in the lest and I can't stand to look at her AND last of all she has no personality. I'm not the only one that feels this way as I stated above. If this show does stay on, she has strings or they pity her.

                                                                        1. re: southerncookn

                                                                          rory had good cooking skills...nice hair and a personality...AF is mousey..sorry to say..and all that crying...what was that about..when they cancel her show she will have a meltdown

                                                                          1. re: janebono

                                                                            I read that the contract was only for 6 episodes which were all filmed over a 2 or 3 day period. I can't imagine that they will offer her any more episodes. I've only seen the first 2 and could barely watch without cringing. I've seen better food demos from high school home ec students (do they still call it home ec?). Every other word is "OK" and why does she talk with her mouth full? Please, take a smaller bite and swallow before talking....

                                                                            1. re: Squint

                                                                              Thank you! I thought I was only one who had an issue with her chewing with her mouth open. She did it back on TNFNS. I can't belive no one at FN has said something. Perhaps they think there is no point.

                                                                          2. re: southerncookn

                                                                            Why all the hatin' on the hair? Some of us are born with naturally curly hair and there isn't much we can do about it unless we blow it out, which is a huge pain in the neck. Brush curly hair and you get a frizzy, poofy mess. I like Amy's hair just fine. Curly girls unite!

                                                                            1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                              naturally curly can be under control, not always threatening to jump out onto the food she is preparing. hers brings medusa to mind....

                                                                              this is the best FN can come up with? probably 90% of the hounds on this site coud do better! i watch FN less and less.

                                                                              oh, and lookee here, the new FN aesthetic: "Talk with Your Mouth Full." new cookbook from the "Hearty Boys".
                                                                              http://www.amazon.com/Talk-Your-Mouth...

                                                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                                                My problem with her isn't her hair. That really shouldn't play into anything, She has no cooking skills. I watched her use a knife and it made me cringe. I just don't think that someone with no experience should be teaching me and that is the premise of these shows. During TNFNS, Tushman and the rest kept saying that people who watch the show want to learn. I don't want to learn something from someone who knows less than I do. My two favorite hosts - Giada and Ina both have experience - Giada both restaurant and cooking school and Ina with The Barefoot Contessa. Give me more of that, please.

                                                                              2. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                Its not about the curly hair. It's about the whole 'Medusa' thing she has going.

                                                                                1. re: Withnail42

                                                                                  ok I usually don't laugh at things people can't change...my gosh I almost spit my Corona out! That was pretty darn funny and I had a major visual with that comment.

                                                                                2. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                  i have curly hair also....but i also have a hair brush...her hair looks like she took the curlers out and left it that way....she should have time to brush it and blow it..or someone at FN should..i mean shes on tv right..not at walmart shopping

                                                                                  1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                    I'm a curly head but I know when to pull it back...ESPECIALLY when cooking :D

                                                                                    1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                      Right on, Avalon! I was just starting to get peeved with all of the mean-jelly-bean hair comments. Go, curly girls!

                                                                                  2. re: janebono

                                                                                    Gosh - although this is totally not cooking-related, I like her hair! And I found Rory's food to be totally unispiring. If I want Roadhouse Grill, I can go there.

                                                                                    1. re: janebono

                                                                                      I'm going to give it half a dozen episodes or so. She is likable, and her food was consistently interesting on the show. She does need a better editor though -- the repeated thing about the husband and his birthday should have been edited out the second time -- and her set looks like public restroom with that shade of aqua tile everywhere. I think it has potential, but FN needs to get their act together.

                                                                                      1. re: gridder

                                                                                        re: the better editing...You are absolutely right about that...she also has a tendency to say "okay" a lot.

                                                                                        1. re: Cat Chow

                                                                                          I noticed "OK" too, it was as if they told her she only had one take so she was nervous and talking too much. She just needs to relax a bit.

                                                                                        2. re: gridder

                                                                                          I think she only has six episodes.

                                                                                    2. re: DiveFan

                                                                                      I was out of the country at the time so I didn't see her kill the CHILAQUILES pronounciation...

                                                                                      If she really wanted to pass on a helpful tip about Guacamole, she should have mentioned that you leave the pit in the Guacamole to delay the oxidation.

                                                                                    3. you know i haven't seen the show so she may give a terrible presentation BUT... many of my neighborhood friends who like the food network would probably like her food (just looked at the mexican one) and use it and it would be a step up from what they usually make. i think they aren't trying to appeal to us. and that market may like her. to them she really would be the "gourmet next door". just my 2 cents. of course i really live next door to them and they haven't asked me... :) LOL.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: AMFM

                                                                                        I agree with you about who they are trying to appeal to. But all FN shows are geared towards that same market and (can't believe I am saying this) the people doing them are much better.(That hurt!) Granted FN has done some very bad shows. But with this one they it's like they know she on for six episodes and simply don't care about quality.

                                                                                        She's just sloppy all round.

                                                                                      2. i love amy and the show!

                                                                                        1. My only hope is that Food Network learns from this and puts the Next Food Network Star series to rest for good.

                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Bunson

                                                                                            not a chance. iirc, they were already calling for submissions for the next season during the last finale.

                                                                                            1. re: Bunson

                                                                                              IMO the ***concept*** of the show is a great idea. Take a dozen or so prospective FN show hosts and put them through an elimination process. Quality, like cream, should rise to the top, right?

                                                                                              Where the show tanked is in execution. The endless manufactured drama (such as the wearying catfighting ["I'm not your bitch, bitch!"]) and participants seemingly chosen more for their ability to generate controversy instead of good food and food education.

                                                                                              I liked the contests in each season, exercises to demonstrate the cheftestants' creativity, resilience, leadership, innovation, on-air host potential and maturity. Or lack thereof....

                                                                                              Too many of the contestants should never have been chosen. Onscreen they came across as either scatter-brained, forgettable, buffoons or jerks. Newsflash to FN execs: I'm not going to watch a show host I think is an idiot.

                                                                                              fltcats, you say you love amy and her show? Well, good on you! Like what you like and don't worry about anyone else. You just won't find much agreement on this thread, though.

                                                                                              1. re: KenWritez

                                                                                                I'm trying to watch her right now and having a hard time. The recipe for Moroccan chicken is exactly like 100 other recipes for Moroccan chicken. There's just nothing that makes her stand out. And I always hated the "gourmet next door" label anyway. It immediately gets my hackles up. Like, what makes you such a hot-shot gourmet? I'm not that big a fan of Guy Fieri either but I'll take him over her. Too bad.

                                                                                                1. re: KenWritez

                                                                                                  Ken, I agree with your assessment of this show and the host (yes, the hair drives me crazy...how does she make it do that???), but I think you have your networks crossed. The "bitch" comment was on Top Chef.

                                                                                                  1. re: Mistica

                                                                                                    You're right, that was "Top Chef." Sorry.

                                                                                              2. I didn't see AF on tv today. Is her show over?

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: kprange

                                                                                                  This show is still listed on the food network website, but it seems to have stalled out. What's the story? I painfully sat through the last 4 or 5 episodes of the charade, and now it seems it was all for nothing

                                                                                                  1. re: sarge

                                                                                                    not for naught: you built your character!